Archive for Tastings & Events

Zoom Tasting

It is hard socializing during the cold months of the pandemic.  And while vaccinations, like Spring, are on the way we need something to get us through the winter months.  While we can’t hang out in each other’s living rooms the doesn’t mean we can’t drink together.  You might try this idea.

Buy two bottles of the same wine.  Drop one off at a friend’s house and take the other home.  Set a time, hop on Zoom, and drink the bottles with each other.  Want to make more of a meal out of it?  One household can buy the wine and the other cook a dinner to go match.  Want to make more of a game out of it?  Brown bag them and guess what the wine is, what the grapes are, where it comes from. (We’d be happy to set this up for you, so no one knows what’s in the bag.)

Yes, we know that some have too many Zoom meetings but think how much more you’d look forward to them if there was a bottle of wine involved.

Current Hours

Wednesday to Sunday
Noon to 6PM

House Cleaning

January is a good time for housecleaning and not just in DC.  Here at Madrona Wines, we have

11 Mystery Boxes


that we are tripping over and would like to see gone to good homes or good gullets.  A 6 pack can be yours for just $48.  First come first served.

We are hoping they will mysteriously disappear (like some other things.)
13 Days.  Poof!

Our Winter Hours

Wednesday to Sunday
Noon to 6PM

Saturday Wine Tastings are Back!

Well, sort of. . .

While we still can’t pour for you at the shop, we can send you home with sample to taste in the comfort of your own home.  Here’s how it works.  Preorder your “tasting set” of 2-ounce samples (enough to share with your partner unless you want the 2-ounces all to yourself) starting Thursday morning, until our sets are sold out. Pick up your samples on Saturday along with a copy of the tasting notes, go home and have at it  We will take orders for the wine you want more of and they be ready for pick up the following Saturday.  The “tasting set” is $5 (plus tax).

So, join us for our First Ever virtual wine tasting featuring the wines of Pala Estates in Sardinia. You can taste along with Mario Pala direct from the island on YouTube ( or watch the embedded video below. Speed up or slow down as you feel or check out their website at

Sardinia is one of the oldest emerged lands in the Mediterranean area … geographically it is part of the French massif, while the rest of the Italian peninsula belongs to the African bloc.

The Azienda Agricola Pala was founded in Sardinia, Italy, in 1950.  Mario Pala is now the third generation of the family taking care of the vines.  The estate is comprised of eight different vineyards.  The vineyards stretch from the town of Serdiana, where Pala has its cellar, and the municipalities of Ussana and Senorbì where the rolling hills are limestone and marnes, to the municipalities of Uras, Terralba and San Nicolò d’Arcidano on the central western coast of the island, where the vineyards are planted in white sand.

2019 Vermentino di Sardegna I Fiori $21  Special Tasting Price $19
100% Vermentino
Vermentino grows in a lot of places but this one has a distinct Sardinian bent.  From 35-year-old vines, the white has an intense, persistent floral and vegetable aroma with note of lime and balsamic. On the palate the vegetable notes are predominant, smooth and full with good depth and well balanced, with a long persistent aftertaste.

2018 Isola dei Nuraghi Silenzi Rosso $14  Special Tasting Price $13
Carignano and Monica
20-year-old vines. Lively ruby red color, violet reflections. Intense aroma with notes of red fruits. Dry and soft taste with good lingering notes.

2018 Monica di Sardegna I Fiori $21  Special Tasting Price $19
100% Monica
Monica is a local varietal that comes from 30-year-old vines. Intense ruby red color with violet hints, very clear. Very intense, with vegetable and spicy hints, light licorice nuance. Dry and smooth to the palate, enjoyably fresh, well-balanced and harmonious, good nose-palate persistence.

2018 Cannonau di Sardegna I Fiori $21  Special Tasting Price $19
This Sardinian version of Grenache comes from 35-year-old vines. Very intense, fresh and immediate aroma with notes of ripe red fruits and vegetables. Dry and smooth to the palate, good structure and nose-palate persistence.

The video below will walk you through the tasting with Mario Pala. It is a little over 18 minutes long:

Just a reminder that our Fall Hours are:

Wednesday to Sunday
Noon to 6PM


The Mystery Lingers

There is still some mystery left at Madrona Wine Merchants.

Mystery Six Packs

We still have Mystery 6 packs left to sell. Most of these wines sold for between $10 and $20 with a few gems hidden in there that sold for more.  We have packed them together into 6 packs that we are selling for $52.  The boxes may contain a mix of red, white, pink, bubbles and maybe even a dessert wine.  Who wants a summer romance when you can have a mystery?

Current Hours:

Wednesday to Sunday, Noon to 4PM.

Sorry for the inconvenience.

The Mystery Returns

Mystery Six Packs


A couple of our distributors were tidying up their warehouses and came up with a lot of odds and ends.  These are left behind lots of small quantities that aren’t worth them trying to sell individually or bottles with damaged labels. Most of these wines sold for between $10 and $20 with a few gems hidden in there that sold for more.  We have packed them together into 6 packs that we are selling for $52.  The boxes may contain a mix of red, white, pink, bubbles and maybe even a dessert wine.  Only Mark knows and he ain’t talking. Want a little mystery in your evening? Here’s your chance.

46 six packs available

First-come first-served

It’s The Weekend

It has been a very unusual week here in Madrona with the kids home from school, restaurant closures, and adjusting to pandemic preparedness.  But we made it to the weekend!  Here at Madrona Wine we are making a few changes to help with social distancing.  First, we are suspending the cheese and crackers at our Saturday tasting.   The communality of open plates seems inappropriate at the moment, so for the moment it is Bring Your Own Palate Cleansers.  Secondly, we’ll be opening the wine earlier on Saturday for those who would like to slip in and taste before we get busy.  (The shop rarely has 10 people at a time in it, but it does get busier as the day goes on.). If It is knowledge about the wineries you want, our knowledgeable Sales Representative will be on hand from 2 to 4. 

That all being said: It’s Pi Day and the weather forecast has some sun in store for us this next week.  Here’s the weekend lineup.

Saturday we have wines from Sicily & Sardinia by Olianas & Colosi.

2018 Olianas, Vermentino $15
2018 Olianas,  Cannonau $15
2018 Olianas, Perdixi $25
75% Bovale,  25% Carignano
2018 Cantine Colosi, Grillo  $13
2018 Cantine Colosi, Nero d’Avola $15

Sunday It is two more Italian winners.
2016 Monacesca Verdicchio Di Matelica  $12
This wine’s heady Spanish broom, acacia and yellow stone fruit scents lift out of the glass. The palate mirrors the nose, offering creamy peach, yellow apple and juicy citrus flavors alongside bright acidity. An almond note caps off the finish.
2018 Miral Nero d’ Avola  $12
A nice everyday Sicilian Red, with a complex taste of dried red fruits and berries, nicely structured with a velvety, long lasting finish.

Madrona Wine Merchants offers free wine tastings featuring 3-5 selections on a theme every Saturday from 2 until the bottles run out and on Sunday, we offer a mini-tasting of two wines all day from 11-5.

Sicily & Sardinia

the wines of Olianas & Colosi

Saturday, March 14th

This Saturday we are tasting the wines from Italy’s two biggest wine producing islands.  No travel permit required.

Sardinia –Olianas started in 2000 by Stefano Casadei, Artemio Olianas and Simone Mugnaini to produce not only organic, but bio-integrated wines.  Their 25 hectares of red and white vineyards produce Sardinian varietals with a sense of history. 
2018 Olianas, Vermentino $15
The Vermentino has strong aromas and orange blossoms floral notes. In the mouth it is fresh, fruity and elegant.
2018 Olianas,  Cannonau $15
Thisi Cannonau is fresh and strong structured with a good tannin presence. It is fruity and floral; a real Sardinian taste.  
2018 Olianas, Perdixi $25
75% Bovale, 25% Carignano
A unique wine named after the numerous partridges that populate the estate, the Perdixi has a charming flavor and a pleasant taste of red berries that is harmonious and well structured.  It is characterized by well-integrated tannins with a long and very pleasant aftertaste. 
Sicily — Since 1987 Cantine Colosi has been producing native Sicilian wines. Consisting of 24 acres of vineyards in Salina, a small island in the Eolian Archipelago, Colosi occupies an area of the island recognized for both its orientation and for the physical-chemical nature of the soil whose volcanic origins are particularly suitable for vine cultivation. The winery is located underground in order to have a constant temperature for the optimum care of the wine and to respect the strict preservation rules of the Eolian archipelago. With three generations of experience, Colosi is led by enologist Pietro Colosi in collaboration with his father Piero.
2018 Cantine Colosi, Grillo  $13
The Colosi Grillo has its own feisty character. It offers aromas of stone fruit, poached pear and baked apple. There are points of saffron and sweet baking spice as well. Aged in acacia tonneaux for a brief four months, this wine is designed to reveal a good amount of that elusive Grillo complexity.
2018 Cantine Colosi, Nero d’Avola $15
Made in a simple and easy-drinking style, this unoaked Nero d’Avola offers youthful brightness and variety-driven notes of wild cherry, cassis, licorice, potting soil and chopped black olives. There is a momentary layer of grilled fennel seed, and that completes what is no doubt an authentically Sicilian presentation.

Madrona Wine Merchants offers free wine tastings featuring 3-5 selections on a theme every Saturday from 2 until the bottles run out and on Sunday, we offer a mini-tasting of two wines all day from 11-5.

Spring Forward

It has been quite a week here in Madrona with talk of Corona overshadowing the Super Tuesday results.  But we made it to the weekend.  Sunday, we set the clocks ahead an hour, and there are signs of Spring in the garden.  It is time to have a glass of wine and we have some good ones lined up to sample. We also have a new art by Paul Lockhart up on Sunday — more details below.  Here’s what’s going on.

Saturday, we have wine from one of our favorite Piedmont producers, Podere Ruggeri Corsini.  They are all great values.
2017 Langhe Bianco  $16
Arneis, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay
2016 Langhe Rosso Matot $13
60% Dolcetto, 30% Barbera, 10% Nebbiolo
2017 Barbera d’Alba    $16
2017 Langhe Nebbiolo    $19
2015 Barolo  $30

Sunday we’ll be pouring a couple of discounted wines from France.
2018 Hecht & Bannier Côtes de Provence Rosé                                     $13
60% Grenache, 35% Cinsault, 5% Vermintino
Well-balanced wine with great acidity and a refined finish. It has tasty rose water and chalk notes, with flavors of white cherry, peach, strawberry and cantaloupe. Fruity, crisp, fresh and ready to drink! 
Was $18, Now $13
2014 Léon Perdigal Réserve des Capucins                                               $10
Grenache, Mourvedre, Syrah
Côtes de RhôneIntense ruby red color and bouquet of red fruits, spices, and brushwood. Well-balanced on the palate with rich, supple tannins.
Was $15, Now $10

Sunday 3 to 5 is also the Artist Reception for our new show Paradigm Shift –from Realistic to Impressionist by Paul Lockhart.  Come see the show and talk to Paul about his work. 

Podere Ruggeri Corsini

Saturday, March 7th, 2pm

The Ruggeri Corsini estate is a family-run winery in the province of Cuneo, the heart of the Langhe hills: Monforte d’Alba.  The winery was founded in 1995, by who had Loredana Addari and Nicola Argamante both graduated with specialized degrees in wine-growing and enology. They left their city jobs to buy a small 10 heactares vineyard (which at the time only produced and sold its grapes). It’s a family run business, owned by the two agronomists and Loredana’s brother, Lorenzo. Stop by on Saturday and try their wines.
2017 Langhe Bianco Arneis, $16
Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay
This unique white blend from the Langhe immediately impresses with an engaging array of apple, pear and gooseberry aromas and a bright palate of layered fruit and crisp acidity.  Over delivers.

2016 Langhe Rosso Matot $13
60% Dolcetto, 30% Barbera, 10% Nebbiolo
The Rosso Matot is Piedmonte in a glass. Dolcetto, Barbera and Nebbiolo harmoniously blend together to result in a rustic wine that offers notes of bark, earth, currants and tobacco. Fresh acidity with a component of dill joining on the finish.
2017 Barbera d’Alba    $16
From thier estate vineyards Corsini’s Barbera d’Alba is a typical Piedmontese barbera with fresh cherry fruit and a striking underlying acidity.
2017 Langhe Nebbiolo    $19
from two different vineyard sites—one is within the Barolo appellation and the other is just outside the appellation limits. This wine has red fruits, pretty florals and spicy aromatics dominate the nose while the palate is well-structured with a nice fruitiness through the middle. The palate has a light hit of blood orange in addition to minerals and a forest floor note.
2015 Barolo  $30
Corsini is known for their single-vineyard Barolos, but this blended example has all the right notes of rose, tea, tar and rich cherry fruit.  We have a very limited supply at this price.

Madrona Wine Merchants offers free wine tastings featuring 3-5 selections on a theme every Saturday from 2 until the bottles run out and on Sunday, we offer a mini-tasting of two wines all day from 11-5.

Leaping Weekend

Last night’s winds blew an extra day onto the February calendar.  It’s LeapEnd here in Madrona and we have a couple of great events lined up to celebrate.

Saturday, February 29th, we are tasting some fine examples from California’s Counterculture.  We have wines from three young Cali winemakers who are bucking the norm. 
2015 Keep Wines, Lost Slough Albariño   $30
2018 Keep Wines, Delta White Cortese Falanghina  $24
2018 Keep Wines, Counoise  $28
2018 Martha Stoumen Wines, Venturi Vineyard Carignan  $36
2018 Inconnu Wine, Papa Jaja Cabernet Sauvignon  $20

Sunday, March 1st,we have a special visit from Bodegas Frontaura.  The Frontaura estate has 120 hectares of vines producing the native variety Tempranillo Tinta de Toro and in the D.O. of Toro. Nexus is their property in Ribera del Duero where they make Tempranillo with a different flair.  Loreto Herrero from the winery will be in the shop from 2 to 4 pm to elaborate about the wines. 
2015 Nexus One Ribera del Duero $15
The Nexus has intensity and freshness. At first floral touches appear followed by subtle aromas of red fruit with dairy notes and hints of caramel.
2014 Frontaura Domino de Valdelacasa Cosecha $15
From Toro the Domino is very intense on the nose, red fruit aromas, strawberry, raspberry, and blackberry are predominate with dairy and well-integrated wood. Touches of eucalyptus, velvety licorice and mineral notes come out. It is smooth, balsamic and very long. It is a structured and complex wine.

Madrona Wine Merchants offers free wine tastings featuring 3-5 selections on a theme every Saturday from 2 until the bottles run out and on Sunday, we offer a mini-tasting of two wines all day from 11-5.